"Go to Botswana at your peril…
The visitor here is often profoundly changed,
even after a short time.
For this is a good country, a place where, for the most part,
governments and people have behaved with propriety and with respect for others.
It is a place that is ready to break the heart in unexpected ways…".
-Alexander McCall Smith (the author of "No 1 Ladies Detective Agency")

  South Africa

African Parks and Safaris
Tel / Fax. +27 (0) 28 3161291
Skype.  zahndt


Mabuasehube / Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park - Botswana

Botswana’s part of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park was formerly known as Gemsbok National Park, (28,400 square kilometres) and lies in the extreme southwest of Botswana. The South African section was formerly known as Kalahari Gemsbok National Park and is 9,591 square kilometres in extent.  There is no physical barrier between the two countries within the park.  This allows wildlife to move freely and for many years there has been informal co-operation between the two authorities. This co-operation was formalised by the creation of the “Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park” on 12th May 2000, and the two former parks are now managed as a single entity, whilst still recognising the territorial integrity of each country. On the Botswana side, the park can be divided into three areas of focus as far as tourists are concerned - the Two Rivers section, the Wilderness Trail and the Mabuasehube section.  Tourists entering from the Botswana side may travel around the South African part of the park at no extra cost and without any immigration formalities. Tourists wishing to leave the park into South Africa must report to the immigration facilities in Twee Rivieren.

Two Rivers Section
Access to Two Rivers, when setting out from Gaborone, is gained by travelling to the south-west on good tarred roads for some 540 kilometres to Tsabong. This is a desert town where camels, whose ancestors were once used for police patrols, can still be seen. Tsabong has basic overnight accommodation, vehicle repair services, fuel and supplies.  From Tsabong the remainder of the journey to Two Rivers is along 310 kilometres of gravel road. This route passes through numerous small villages and heads to Bokspits (past some spectacular red sand-dunes) in the extreme southwestern corner of Botswana. Then the road heads to the north for the final 53 kilometres to Two Rivers.  At present there are no reliable fuel supplies available after Tsabong, although petrol is usually available in Bokspits and petrol and diesel are available on the South African side at Twee Rivieren, where there is also a shop for food, drink and souvenirs.
Two Rivers, which faces the Twee Rivieren Rest Camp on the South African side of the border, has a camping ground with hot and cold showers and flush toilets.  From Two Rivers visitors join the border road up the Nossob Valley, which is jointly used by South Africa and Botswana.  Some 25 kilometres up this road on the Botswana side is the Rooiputs public camping ground, with rustic showers, pit latrines and shade shelters.  For those visitors wishing to get away from the more frequently used areas, a further camping ground is situated on the Botswana side some 223 kilometres up the Nossob Valley road turning off at a place called Grootbrak.  A short distance further, past a water trough, lies the Polentswa camping ground; just before which is the grave of a German diamond prospector whose remains were found after his vehicle broke down in 1958.  Polentswa has a pleasant view and a good resident population of wildlife, and has the same type of rustic facilities as Rooiputs, though you need to bring all your own water. 

Wilderness Trail

The Wilderness Trail starts from Polentswa and is only open to 4x4 vehicles.  It covers some 250 kilometres that wind from pan to pan through to the northern boundary of the park, through a new check-in point at Kaa, where trail participants may wish to have a shower and replenish water supplies.  The trail then turns back into the park to follow a further route along more pans.  Eventually the trail re-joins the Nossob Valley road 20 kilometres before a spot called Union’s End close up against the Namibian border.  The trail is only available on an advance-booking basis to 2-4 vehicles travelling together and taking a set time to complete the trail - only one group is permitted to commence the trail on any given day, thus ensuring that no others will be encountered along the way.

Mabuasehube Section
The pretty Mabuasehube section of the park is reached separately, either from Tsabong in the south or Tshane in the north or Kokotsha in the East. The route from the south will be described first. The turnoff in Tsabong is sign posted “Tshane, 240 km”. Soon afterwards you take the major fork to the right. The first part of the road is gravelled and then becomes a sandy track. You cannot miss the new park entrance gate, about 116 km north of Tsabong. If you are coming from Gaborone an interesting alternative is to take a cut line from Kokotsha.  When you reach the large red-and-white telecommunications tower, turn right. Where the road does a sharp left turn, you go straight on, due west on a track that widens out into a firebreak after about 30 km.  After another 77 km you meet the Tshane to Tsabong road where you should turn left (south) and reach Mabuasehube entrance after a further 17 km.  The nearest fuel supplies to Mabuasehube are in Tsabong. There are a number of campsites each overlooking pans in the Mabuasehube section of the park.  These campsites are situated at Mabuasehube, Lesholoago, Khiding, Mpaathutlwa, Monamodi and Bosobogolo Pans have rustic latrines, showers and shade shelters.  There is also a camping ground with an ablution block just inside the entrance.  

Kaa Entrance

You can also enter the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park through a new entrance at Kaa, on the northern boundary of the park.   Kaa (which means “nothing” in the local language as that is what the first people found there) is not yet marked on maps.  To get there from Kang on the Trans Kalahari Highway, take the road to Hukuntsi, and then take the road to Zutshwa.  The turn-off to Zutshwa is between the buildings of Hukuntsi Wholesalers, next to the airstrip.  After about 60 km you will reach Zutshwa, (where the water is so saline there is a salt works on your left as you enter the village).  From Zutshwa head eastwards and after about 24 km you will find a turning to the left.  From this turning proceed southwestwards for about 73 km and then turn right and continue for 5 km to Kaa. 

There are no fuel or food supplies available in the park, except on the South African side

Bookings can be made through the Botswana Parks and Reserves Reservations Offices:

Telephone No:        (267) 318 0774
Fax No:                   (267) 318 0775
E-mail:                     dwnp@gov.bw

Address:  P O Box 131, Gaborone, BOTSWANA (Millennium Park, Tshwene Drive, Plot  No. 199

  One of my favourite Wildlife Films
Eternal Enemies:  Lions vs Hyenas
By Dereck and Beverly Joubert
  FOR MORE INFORMATION, SEND US AN EMAIL TO zahn@africanparksandsafaris.co.za